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    Record Child Vaccination Rates Reported

    But Official Says CDC Still 'Struggling' With Whooping Cough Cases

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    Since 1980, the rates of reported whooping cough cases have been increasing in adolescents and adults, as well as in young infants. Adolescents and adults can spread whooping cough infection to susceptible young infants and other family members.

    Adult Rates Poor

    Experts remain disappointed by poor adult vaccination rates last year.

    Less than 70% of U.S. elderly got recommended vaccinations against influenza last year, far short of 2010 federal goals of 90%. Less than five in 10 African-Americans and 6 in 10 Hispanics over 65 years of age got flu shots.

    Despite widespread flu vaccine shortages, demand among seniors was still too low in 2004 and 2005 to use all available doses, the CDC reported this year. Only 37% of adults aged 50 to 64 and 24% of those aged 18 to 49 at high risk of influenza because of asthma, cancer treatment, or other chronic health problems got flu shots least year, officials reported.

    Less than 60% of elderly persons got universally recommended shots against pneumococcal pneumonia in 2002, according to the CDC's National Center on Health Statistics.

    "The statistics we have are very disappointing," said David A. Neumann, PhD, executive director of the National Partnership for Immunization, a nonprofit group that received funding from the CDC and from vaccine manufacturers.

    Government goals call for 90% of all patients on kidney dialysis to receive vaccinations against hepatitis B by 2010, though only 56% got the shot last year, the agency said.

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